Help with Muscovy eggs and mama?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by digichix, Apr 20, 2012.

  1. digichix

    digichix Out Of The Brooder

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    I've been reading through the threads for help with my duck and eggs and have found it very helpful, however I am still confused about the whole process and hope you all can help. My muscovy duck has been laying one egg every day, and I took the first batch since it was her first lay and I wasn't sure about having ducklings around. I have since lost my drake to a fox (about a week ago) so I've let the eggs go hoping they may hatch and have some of Spunky's (that was the drake) personality live on. So right now she has 16 eggs, sets on them at night, and covers them during the day. She has lost some color, and she squeaks? instead of the cooing she did before. She has also become more distant toward me-doesn't come up and is kind of offish when I pick her up (which I do only at night right now to get her in the coop since I know they get tender and you can hurt them by picking them up during mating season). So my main question is-how long should I wait to see if she will get broody and set on the eggs full time and is that when day 1 is considered or should I candle the eggs before then to see if they are fertile? I really don't want to disturb her nest anymore than I have to but I am concerned she may not set since it is her first year at this so I'd like to try and hatch them on my own if she won't. Any help would be greatly appreciated and any advice to help her along I'll take!
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is this nest in a safe, protected spot?

    You say that you have to put her in the coop at night so it sounds like the nest is unprotected. If the nest is not safe, I would suggest moving the nest and locking her with the nest in a small confined SAFE area such as a dog crate. Hopefully she will adjust to the movement of the nest and decide to set.

    If the nest is protected than removing her from it at night will not help her go broody. Not much you can do to force broodiness, she will set when she is ready.

    Is she still laying? If so, are you leaving those eggs?

    Being young she may or may not go broody. My muscovy went broody about 3 weeks after she started laying for the first time. She hatched 11 out of 14 eggs 2 weeks ago.

    Her instincts are telling her to protect her nest so regardless of how she acted before, she will change.
     
  3. ian4379

    ian4379 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i'm a little confused as well now, is she laying her eggs in her coop as jdywntr mentioned?

    if so, she is sitting on them at night, and has sixteen eggs and covers them during the day, correct? she will be sitting full time in the next few days if so, be patient, mine will sit at night sometime for 5 or 6 days before they sit during the day. you may have been very lucky(in a way) that you lost your drake whilst she had already laid some egs, the rest should be fertile to him as well.

    fingers crossed all goes well and you'll have some ducklings in 5 to 6 weeks[​IMG]
     
  4. digichix

    digichix Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2011
    I think the eggs are well protected. I have a fenced in area and the coop is in that area, and I started putting her in at night because of the fox and other animals in my area. She would go in herself but not til after dark, and I have a hard time seeing so I put her in around 7 every evening and shut the door-I didn't shut them in all the time before, just when we would get snow or it was going to be really cold overnight-I probably don't have to do this since its fenced in I just feel a little better if I do. So she is laying in the nest, in the coop, in the fenced in area and she is the only bird I currently have-my chickens are with a friend because they were picking on her when I first got her (I got her because my drake was trying to mate with the chickens, and then the chickens were picking on her, and then I lost my drake, such a circle). Should I just keep her in the coop all the time or is it ok to let her out during the day? She doesn't go into the coop during the day at all but the door is always open. I do let her free range when I can sit out with her-usually every other day for a couple of hours-is this ok to do? She is still laying once a day and I have left them in the nest, I didn't want to disturb it, and I read that she will stop laying when she has enough eggs (according to her)-should I take some of them out? Last question-is day one when she starts to set on the eggs?
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  5. chrisarvor

    chrisarvor Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am no expert but if she is not sitting on the eggs full time then they wont hatch????
    they only get off for a wash,drink and a bit of food and go back
    or at least thats what mine do
     
  6. digichix

    digichix Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2011
    From what I've read, they go through stages before they finally sit on them, and since she is still laying an egg a day, she doesn't feel her nest is full yet, and she is sitting at night and covering them during the day. She is definitely changing and she doesn't like me near the eggs, so I am asuming she will start sitting full time soon (or am I just hoping?). Should I get an incubator going or just let nature take its course? I'm getting more nervous everday!
     
  7. digichix

    digichix Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 25, 2011
    Quick update: Just went to let her out for the day, and she is still laying eggs but it looks like she started turning the other ones (or at least some of them). I didn't mark them until last week (something I've learned recently) so I just put an x on them and the x is now in a different spot so she is turning them. There are 20 eggs now, hopefully she will stop soon?
     
  8. ian4379

    ian4379 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    hi, just keep letting her lay, she will sit when she's ready, it wont be long if she's on them at night!

    i only let my ducks sit on 18 eggs, they usually lay a few more sneaky ones when they are sitting full time, i've found i get poor hatch rates if i let tehm sit on more. i had a new duck lay 30 eggs before she decided to sit!
     
  9. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Does sound like she is getting close.. [​IMG]
     
  10. masmassage

    masmassage New Egg

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    Sorry, I know I am replying to an old post but fingers crossed!! You mentioned your muscovy duck sat only at night for 5/6 nights before sitting "fulltime". That is what my girl Daffy has done - she is now about to start week 3 of 24/7 (with normal breaks - food etc). What my question is - does any part of the night only sitting get counted into the incubation period - or do I start counting from the start of fulltime? Sorry if a dumb question but I have not done this before - to complicate things she is only about 7/8 months old and decided to lay under the house which we cannot access!!!!
     

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